SPARK theater + dance Show HOME Focuses on Foster Teens
What if the home you were familiar with was suddenly torn from you and you were sent drifting? Hundreds of teens in Minnesota are currently set adrift into group and foster homes, waiting for a place to land.
SPARK theater + dance has created a show about Minnesota teens waiting to be adopted and the journey toward home. Using physical theater to weave a poetic narrative inspired by Homer's Odyssey, SPARK intersperses video interviews of actual teens in the foster care system. The audience is taken through an immersive experience to feel what it's like for a teen to seek a home.
The topic of adoption fueled the interest of SPARK artistic directors Corey and Betsy Mills, and when Betsy's sister and brother-in-law recently adopted a 15 year old, the topic became both personal and urgent. "These teens are facing adulthood without a safety net," Betsy relays. "Something needs to happen now."
Following SPARK's mission, they developed HOME as a theatrical way of telling the stories of foster teens. They've partnered with organizations already making an impact. Audiences will be introduced to The Reel Hope Project, a video Production Company committed to showing real faces of real teens seeking adoption; Foster Art, a company that helps children create artworks for donation and gives a portion of the profits to organizations that support foster children; and Threads for Teens Minnesota, which provides free clothing for girls in need.
In HOME, audiences will move through the theatre space to represent a teenager's journey within the foster system. "We want to help the audience break out of their usual experience," Betsy Mills explains, "and contemplate the experiences a foster teen encounters." The show uniquely combines the concrete (in this case real teens and adoption) with the abstract (the poetic and movement framework). Ultimately, the creators of HOME hope that audiences will be inspired to do something practical to affect foster teens, from making an adoption plan to donating clothing to befriending an adoptive family.
The cast includes Joann Oudekerk, Cory Johnson, Corey Mills and Betsy Mills. The artistic team includes Courtney Schmitz (Lighting Design), Josette Elstad (Costume Design), Phil Utteck (Video Production Design) with video content provided by The Reel Hope Project, and music by TEk of The Produce Dept., Wade B. of Wade B. Productions, and Cory Wong.
IF YOU GO:
SPARK theater + dance presents...
Created and directed by Corey and Betsy Mills
Starring: Joann Oudekerk, Cory Johnson, Corey and Betsy Mills
March 24-April 1
Fridays and Saturdays: March 24-25, 31 & April 1 @ 7:30pm
Thursday, March 30 @ 7:30pm
Matinees on March 25-26 & April 1 @ 2pm
At The Capri Theater, 2027 West Broadway Ave., Minneapolis MN 55411
Discounts: $19 students, seniors (65+) and children and groups of 10+